Episode 88 – Kevin Potter – COO, Heritage Bank

Kevin Potter, Chief Operating Officer of Heritage Bank, talks: leadership and gender diversity, self awareness, intent versus impact, listening to learn, and The Beatles over The Rolling Stones.

Richard sat down with Kevin Potter, the COO of Heritage Bank, when he was just three months into his new role but he shared some strong insights into leadership, business, finance and his championing of gender diversity. Heritage is Australia’s largest customer-owned bank, with a history dating back to 1875, when it was founded in Toowoomba in regional Queensland. Kevin is someone who is highly educated and who has completed a number of the best management courses around the world, including Harvard University’s Advanced Management Program and the INSEAD AVIRA Organisation Leadership course. He also has a Bachelor of Arts and a Graduate Diploma of Business in finance from Monash University.

Born and bred in Melbourne, Victoria, Kevin’s strong belief in gender equality stems back to his childhood. The youngest of two brothers, surrounded by his aunt and six female cousins, Kevin was raised by his mother after his father left the family when he was just a few days old.

“I very much believe in gender and gender equality. I have a daughter so there is even more reason to feel that way. I think when you stand back and look at it,  for so many reasons, the right thing to do is to have gender equality. There is certainly a moral compass that should be applied, but even if you don’t accept that…performance is much greater (in a company) when you have that balance,” he said.

Upon graduating from university, Kevin secured a position with his beloved AFL North Melbourne football club before later joining the ANZ Bank graduate program. During his career, Kevin has held numerous senior roles with National Australia Bank and the Suncorp Group.

“From a very young age I always envisioned myself with a brief case for some reason… I always had an interest in banking and finance. Banks have such a profound influence on communities generally, and the economy more broadly, and I was always fascinated by how that worked,” Kevin said.

Kevin lives in Toowoomba, Queensland, with his wife.

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